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Daily Changes in Fed Funds Futures Prices

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  • JAMES D. HAMILTON

Abstract

This paper explores the properties of daily changes in the prices for near-term fed funds futures contracts. The paper finds these contracts to be excellent predictors of the fed funds rate, and shows that the claim of a nonzero term premium in the short-horizon contracts is more sensitive to outliers than previous research appears to have recognized. I find some statistically significant evidence of serial correlation in the daily changes, but this accounts for only a tiny part of the 1-day movements and there is essentially zero predictability for horizons longer than 1 day. Settlement futures prices for each day appear to incorporate the information embodied in that day's term structure of longer-horizon Treasury securities. Previous employment growth makes a statistically significant contribution to predicting futures price changes, though again this could only account for a tiny part of the daily variance. The paper concludes that futures prices provide a very useful measure of the daily changes in the market's expectation of near-term changes in Fed policy. Copyright (c) 2009 The Ohio State University.

Suggested Citation

  • James D. Hamilton, 2009. "Daily Changes in Fed Funds Futures Prices," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 41(4), pages 567-582, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:mcb:jmoncb:v:41:y:2009:i:4:p:567-582
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Lahura, Erick, 2012. "Midiendo los efectos de la política monetaria a través de las expectativas de mercado," Revista Estudios Económicos, Banco Central de Reserva del Perú, issue 23, pages 39-52.
    2. Paulo Maio, 2014. "Another Look at the Stock Return Response to Monetary Policy Actions," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 18(1), pages 321-371.
    3. Monticini, Andrea & Ravazzolo, Francesco, 2014. "Forecasting the intraday market price of money," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 29(C), pages 304-315.
    4. Mark Gertler & Peter Karadi, 2015. "Monetary Policy Surprises, Credit Costs, and Economic Activity," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 7(1), pages 44-76, January.
    5. Gospodinov, Nikolay & Jamali, Ibrahim, 2015. "The response of stock market volatility to futures-based measures of monetary policy shocks," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 42-54.
    6. Rangel, José Gonzalo, 2011. "Macroeconomic news, announcements, and stock market jump intensity dynamics," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 35(5), pages 1263-1276, May.
    7. Di Maggio, Marco, 2010. "The Political Economy of the Yield Curve," MPRA Paper 20697, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. James D. Hamilton & Tatsuyoshi Okimoto, 2011. "Sources of variation in holding returns for fed funds futures contracts," Journal of Futures Markets, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 31(3), pages 205-229, March.
    9. Puriya Abbassi & Dieter Nautz & Christian Offermanns, 2010. "Interest Rate Dynamics and Monetary Policy Implementation in Switzerland," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 146(I), pages 313-340, March.
    10. Hibiki Ichiue & Tomonori Yuyama, 2007. "Biases in Monetary Policy Expectations Extracted From Fed Funds Futures and Surveys," Bank of Japan Working Paper Series 07-E-15, Bank of Japan.
    11. Angrist, Joshua D. & Jordà, Òscar & Kuersteiner, Guido M., 2013. "Semiparametric Estimates of Monetary Policy Effects: String Theory Revisited," Working Paper Series 2013-24, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
    12. Carlo Altavilla & Raffaella Giacomini & Riccardo Costantini, 2014. "Bond Returns and Market Expectations," Journal of Financial Econometrics, Society for Financial Econometrics, vol. 12(4), pages 708-729.
    13. Jean-Sébastien Fontaine, 2012. "Estimating the Policy Rule from Money Market Rates when Target Rate Changes Are Lumpy," Staff Working Papers 12-41, Bank of Canada.
    14. James D. Hamilton, 2008. "Daily Monetary Policy Shocks and the Delayed Response of New Home Sales," NBER Working Papers 14223, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. Gospodinov, Nikolay & Jamali, Ibrahim, 2012. "The effects of Federal funds rate surprises on S&P 500 volatility and volatility risk premium," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 497-510.
    16. Gustavo Abarca & José Gonzalo Rangel & Guillermo Benavides, 2010. "Exchange Rate Market Expectations and Central Bank Policy: The case of the Mexican Peso-US Dollar from 2005-2009," Working Papers 2010-17, Banco de México.
    17. Berger, Helge & Ehrmann, Michael & Fratzscher, Marcel, 2011. "Geography, skills or both: What explains Fed watchers' forecast accuracy of US monetary policy?," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 420-437, September.
    18. Dunbar, Kwamie & Amin, Abu S., 2015. "The nature and impact of the market forecasting errors in the Federal funds futures market," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 174-192.
    19. Berger, Helge & Ehrmann, Michael & Fratzscher, Marcel, 2006. "Geography or skills: What explains Fed watchers’ forecast accuracy of US monetary policy?," Working Paper Series 695, European Central Bank.
    20. Coffinet, J., 2008. "La prévision des taux d’intérêt à partir de contrats futures : l’apport de variables économiques et financières," Working papers 193, Banque de France.
    21. Tideman, T. Nicolaus & Plassmann, Florenz, 2010. "Pricing externalities," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 176-184, June.
    22. repec:ctc:serie1:def10 is not listed on IDEAS
    23. Ghent, Andra, 2007. "Why do markets react badly to good news? Evidence from Fed Funds Futures," MPRA Paper 1708, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • E5 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit

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